I’ve been going to the gym at least 3 days a week, I shoot for 4 but that doesn’t always happen. One of those days I work with my trainer. She asked how my weekend had gone and if I had any trouble after our last workout. I told her no, but I had gotten a migraine and it was a bad one, but that I didn’t believe it was caused by over working my muscles.
I have told her a little bit about my situation. How I am an agnostic atheist. How my mom and I are having issues. It was after all, how I found out that our beliefs are along the same lines. I try not to tell her too much of my family junk, but it is hard sometimes since she is an unbiased person who doesn’t know anyone else in my family. Also I have a tendency, since I became a stay at home mom, to talk too much when I’m with a peer for the simple fact that I usually just have children to talk to. I think this is an annoying by-product of being a stay at home mom, at least for me. I used to get annoyed at the over talkers in a group, now that is sometimes me and it does annoy me at myself.
Anyway, a day after I’d had my session with her, it donned on me that talking to her might out myself in my community I’m not sure how I feel about that. She tells me about some of her clients, not names and she never points them out to me, but she has told me that one is very religious and he is intimidated by her, she says most of her men clients are. She’s talked about some of her women clients, once again never names just making small talk. She did say that one of her clients asked if my kids when to the elementary school and if I worked there because she has seen me there. Evidently she volunteers on the same day I do.
I’m thinking if she talks to me about some clients then she probably talks to other clients about clients. She doesn’t know my whole back story about how I became an unbeliever or even how difficult that journey was, only that I am one. She does not flaunt that about herself, but she is not ashamed of it and does not take issue with others knowing it. She has a son in high school who believes just as she does. It does not mean she has told them I am an atheist but I wonder if she did would they see me differently? Would they talk to their peers about me, would those peers work at the school I volunteer at? Would my children by affected by this?
I would never want my children to be treated differently because their parents believe differently than the majority of people in our community. However, I do not wish to hide who or what I am forever. I don’t want my children to feel any shame on my behalf either. Perhaps it is my job in this situation to be the good moral, upstanding citizen I am. To continue to help at their school. To put myself out there. To show those that my have preconceived notions about the godless, that we are not bad. We are willing to protect your children and help them, to hug them in the halls. To volunteer in their schools. To attend their birthday parties. To teach our children manners and empathy and goodwill.
We are out there. At the gym, in your schools, in your community. We are just like you, we hurt, we laugh, we get angry, we are happy. We don’t believe in a god, we don’t want to be treated differently because of that. We want what you want. We want what everyone wants. Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
Maybe I will continue to talk about it with my trainer. Maybe I won’t. Not sure yet. However, what is done is already done.
Have you ever realized after the fact that talking to someone about something might not have been a good idea?